Nytt

Det er idag Anjem Choudary og hans Sharia4UK skal stå i spissen for Sharia Now!-demonstrasjonen på Trafalgar Square. Denne demonstrasjonen provoserte så sterkt at det i løpet av noen timer ble organisert en motdemonstrasjon: British Muslims for a Secular Society.

Disse sekulære muslimene vet at folk som Choudary øker spenningen mellom folkegruppene og gjør muslimer forhatt.

Men ikke før var initiativet realisert før Inayat Inayat Bunglawala fra Muslim Council of Britain foreslo en bredere, «økumenisk» demonstrasjon.

Også English Defence League stiller. Det betyr tre motdemonstrasjoner, og politiet får et svare strev med å holde dem fra hverandre.

Men det interessante er at Muslim Council of Britain forsøker å slenge seg på en kritikk av de mer militante islamistene. Selv holder de seg til Det muslimske Brorskap.

Melanie Phillips forklarer i Spectator:

This weekend there is to be a demonstration in London organised by the Islamists of the re-formed al Muhajiroun calling for sharia law to be enforced in Britain.

When they heard about this, various moderate, anti-Islamist Muslims started suggesting on Facebook and elsewhere that a counter demonstration be held. Within a short space of time, the moderate anti-Islamist British Muslims for a Secular Democracy decided to hold a counter-protest of their own. It was great news that reformist British Muslims were now getting it together to oppose the Islamists like this. But then things got a little bit complicated.

Alarmed by the threat that such moderate Muslims pose to the Islamist stranglehold over public discourse, the Muslim Brotherhood moved swiftly to try to neutralise them. Thus a surprising article appeared on the Guardian’s Comment is free blog by Inayat Bunglawala of the Brotherhood’s British arm, the Muslim Council of Britain – which, having been briefly given the cold shoulder by the former Communities Secretary Hazel Blears who is one of the very few British politicians to understand the threat that it poses, has now disgracefully been welcomed back into the government fold. Bunglawala called for Muslims to mount a counter-demonstration against al Muhajiroun in support of

a multi-faith, multicultural democracy where people are free to practise their faith or not to if they so choose.

How heart-warming! This is the same Bunglawala who, according to a report by the Institute for the Study of Islam and Christianity, Islam in Britain, wrote that the genocidal Hamas, whose aim is to eradicate Israel and all Jews from the face of the earth and impose an Islamic theocracy in the Middle East, was an

authentically Islamic movement

and

a source of comfort for Muslims all over the world.

The report went on:

In the same article, Bunglawala supported the radical Wahabbi Muslim clerics in Saudi Arabia, Salman al-’Awadh and Safar al-Hawali (later linked to Osama bin Laden) and the Islamic Salvation Front in Algeria. In other issues of Trends he attacked the Bin-’Ali regime in Tunisia while supporting the Islamist Egyptian cleric ‘Umar ‘Abd al-Rahman, spiritual leader of the Egyptian Islamic jihad terrorist group, who was arrested by the US authorities for alleged links to the first bombing of the Twin Towers. Bunglawala claimed ‘Umar was simply ‘calling on Muslims to fulfil their duty to Allah and to fight against oppression and oppressors everywhere’. This looks like clear agreement with the violent Islamist call for jihad by terror anywhere and at any time.

As the Telegraph also reported:

In January 1993, Mr Bunglawala wrote a letter to Private Eye, the satirical magazine, in which he called the blind Sheikh Omar Abdul Rahman ‘courageous’ – just a month before he bombed the World Trade Center in New York. After Rahman’s arrest in July that year, Mr Bunglawala said that it was probably only because of his ‘calling on Muslims to fulfil their duty to Allah and to fight against oppression and oppressors everywhere’. Five months before 9/11, Mr Bunglawala also circulated writings of Osama bin Laden, who he regarded as a ‘freedom fighter’, to hundreds of Muslims in Britain.

And as I reported here, Bunglawala told me on Radio Four’s The Moral Maze that he was certainly committed to turning Britain into an Islamic state. By peaceful means, of course.

Hilariously Bunglawala now even poses as an apostle of gay rights, suggesting here that the MCB might have

a gay Muslim support group as an affiliate.

It would be interesting to know whether he and the MCB (which two years ago backed the new sexual orientation regulations) therefore renounce their mentor Sheikh Yusuf Qaradawi who has said homosexuals should be put to death. In his attempt to reposition himself as a liberal, Bunglawala is surely the mirror image of Nick Griffin in his attempt to reposition the BNP as a non-racist party – and about as plausible. The BNP and EDL are of course a gift to the MCB, which can cynically and grotesquely parade its opposition to such groups as evidence of its own ‘anti-fascism’ and ‘anti-racism’ and thus insulate itself from precisely such charges. Bunglawala’s Cif article should be seen in that strategic context. But I digress.

Two days after Bunglawala’s call for a protest against al Muhajiroun, Shaaz Mahboob of BMSD fought back with another article on Comment is free against this threat by the Brotherhood to pose as the Muslim anti-Islamist resistance and thus destroy that resistance. In the course of this article, Mahboob welcomed Bunglawala’s apparent conversion to the cause of liberalism — a plaudit offered maybe through strategic tactfulness or perhaps with tongue firmly in cheek.

Other Muslim groups, both reformist and reactionary, are now also getting in on the counter-demo act — so much so that al Muhajiroun’s ‘Sharia Now!’ demo will be opposed by a number of different protests by genuinely anti-Islamist Muslims, the pro-sharia Muslim Brotherhood and the anti-Islamists/anti-Muslims of the English Defence League. As of a few days ago, the plan was to corral all the counter-demonstrators in separate pens from each other, let alone from al Muhajiroun.

The prospect of a clear anti-extremist message being delivered this weekend does not look altogether promising.


A less than united front